National Glass Recycling Video Competition Won by MSU Students

January 29, 2014

4 Min Read
National Glass Recycling Video Competition Won by MSU Students

A group of four Michigan State University (MSU) School of Packaging students are the winners of the Glass Packaging Institute’s first-ever Recycle Glass Day YouTube video competition.  GPI will present the winning students with a total cash prize of $5,000, and will also present the MSU School of Packaging with a $5,000 cash prize. GPI will launch the winning video as a Public Service Announcement (PSA) on Recycle Glass Day (

“This video really reinforces the message that each of us must do our part to make recycling happen,” says Dr. Susan Selke, Acting Director, MSU School of Packaging.  “Glass is truly 100% recyclable, but only if it is delivered into a system that allows recycling to occur.”

The four winning students, Jonathon Beach (Edmore, MI), Stephen Gizicki (Canton, MI), Joshua Lobert (Blanchard, MI), and Adam Simon (Edmore, MI)—all packaging majors in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at MSU—participated in the competition in a class led by packaging specialist and MSU professor, Dennis Young.  Their winning video features stop-motion technology and its tagline is “Glass can’t recycle itself.”  [Please visit to view the video.] 

“We wanted to emphasize the fact that glass can’t recycle itself,” says Lobert.  “It takes other people to actually do their part to make the world better.  Glass is a reusable material, so it’s important to recycle it.”

“We are very appreciative of the continuing support of GPI to packaging education,” says Mr. Dennis Young, Specialist, MSU School of Packaging.  “This opportunity resulted in great excitement, serious planning and creativity and a number of excellent submissions to the contest.  Congratulations to the winners and all participants, and remember Recycle Glass Day!”

Over 80 packaging sciences students from six universities—Cal Poly, Clemson University, Michigan State University, Rochester Institute of Technology, San Jose State University, and Stout University of Wisconsin—created videos to help build national awareness about the benefits of glass container recycling to save energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and better the environment.

“We are very impressed with all of the entries we received for our Recycle Glass Day student video competition,” said Joseph Cattaneo, president of the Glass Packaging Institute.  “The winning MSU student video effectively communicates an environmental call-to-action for more Americans to commit to recycle their glass bottles and jars.” 

Judges for the video competition included Joseph Cattaneo, president of the Glass Packaging Institute; Conni Kunzler, recycling specialist and communications consultant for the Glass Packaging Institute; and Katherine Rowan, PhD, professor and Associate Chair of Communication at George Mason University.  The videos were judged on originality and creativity (50%); communicating the "glass message” (30%); and production technique and value (20%). 

Today, glass is the proven form of packaging for those who are looking for sustainability, purity, and recyclability. Glass is made from all-natural, sustainable raw materials and recycled glass also minimizes consumption of raw materials and lessens the industry’s demand for energy. 

“People think of glass as just a package to drink out of, but realistically, glass has had a life form.  The bottles are going to be recycled again and again and again,” says Gizicki.  “Our video gives glass more of a personality and encourages people to avoid discarding glass in the trash.”

As a rule of thumb, for every 1% of recycled glass used, energy costs drop 0.5%.  A 10% increase in recycled glass use decreases fossil fuel emissions by 2.5% and decreases particulate emissions by 7%. 

“Glass is 100% recyclable in a closed-loop system and the use of recycled glass is a critical part of the manufacture of cradle-to-cradle glass containers,” said Cattaneo.  “By spreading the word about the benefits of glass container recycling, we hope to increase the amount of quality cullet for the manufacture of new bottles and jars and continue to improve our environmental footprint.”

On the Recycle Glass Day website, consumers can also find out more about how to recycle locally, fun facts on glass container recycling, and discover how much carbon they save by recycling glass containers on GPI’s glass container carbon calculator. For more information on how to start recycling glass bottles and jars in local communities, consumers can go to

Source: The Glass Packaging Institute (GPI)

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